Most people tend to consider taxes only when it concerns their income. Taxes like the gift and estate tax, payroll taxes, self-employment tax, and the capital gains tax can have a serious impact on your finances, even after you retire and you're no longer earning an income.
When you’re planning your future, your finances likely are of chief importance. We offer more than just tax knowledge when helping you plan for retirement, we offer a step-by-step plan for your retirement. The most important part of developing this plan is just simply taking the time to listen to what your retirement goals are. After that, we assess your net worth and begin to calculate the best retirement contributions you should be making.
We also evaluate your expenses, particularly home and medical expenses, to ensure that the budget we provide to you is adequate. We are not investment brokers so we cannot set up investments for you, but we will find the right investment broker for you and communicate your needs to them. This allows them to do their job in a manner that’s consistent with the retirement plan we created for you.
Personal Financial Advisor
As people plan for their financial future, they often consult with a CPA. A CPA can not only help you create a financial plan but also keep you aware of changing tax laws concerning various aspects of your finances. A CPA can act as a personal financial advisor as you plot your future course, and can assist you in determining what to do with your assets in order to minimize your task burden.
Investing vs Dept Repayment
One question we get asked often is "Should I invest my extra capital or use it to repay debt". My answer is always the same: GET OUT OF DEBT FIRST, and then invest. However, I admit that I am in the minority on this. There are a few types of debt that give you tax advantages. For example, there is a home mortgage interest deduction on your personal tax return. Some will argue that you should not be in a rush to pay off your mortgage because you will then lose this deduction and will then pay higher taxes. While it is true that you may pay higher taxes now, debt poses a risk that I don’t want my clients exposed to any more than necessary. You never know what risks lay around the corner. Whatever they are, you will be in a much stronger position to tackle them if you are debt-free.
Along with the financial risk that debt poses, there is an emotional toll it can take on individuals and families (as well as nations). Alternatively, there is a powerful sense of freedom and accomplishment when a person climbs out of debt and stays out of it. Debt is a useful tool, but I believe it should only be used for education, purchasing a home, and investing in your business when there’s low risk of default. I also urge clients to build a large savings, primarily for emergency purposes. This "rainy day fund" can be held in safe, low-risk, investments.